How Do You Identify an Effective Backlink?

SEO Shines – Professional Digital Agency in USA
  • Date Published
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Learn how, with every new Google Penguin update, the dynamics of effective link building changes.

Every time Google throws out a Penguin update it causes a frenzy among digital marketers. Every expert panic checks their analytics to see whether their site is still up there or not. So many websites suffer penalties and lose their ranking due to newly defined spam links, which brings us to the fact that there still is a void when it comes to the definition of a quality backlink.

You may be acquainted with SEO sources such as Moz and Neil Patel for finding relevant information and news regarding off-page SEO and backlinking. But even these digital powers are failing to properly define what Google wants from marketers when it comes to backlinks.

That is why we have collected some information to help you to understand what makes and does not make, an effective backlink.

So What Makes a Quality Backlink?

Relevancy of the Page

While the relevancy of the domain does not matter when it comes to creating quality backlinks, you cannot say the same for page relevancy. In fact, the latest Google updates suggest that the relevancy of the page where the link is made and referring to is crucial

Page relevancy considers the thematic relevance of a website page’s content associated with the backlinked websites on that page. If you are creating a link to another website, it’s crucial that there is thematic relevance within the content of that page.

Thematic relevance is an important factor in determining that link’s equity passing to your website. This is a computation of how relevant that content is to the keyword phrase it is linked to. If relevant words or phrases are present in the content on which the link is made then that would classify as a thematically relevant link.

Page Content-Length

The length of page content means the number of words that the Google Bot crawls. With regards to backlinks, page content length matters as the page associated with the link will have valuable and relevant information for the user.

Page relevancy and content length are two factors by which Google identifies the authority of the link – you would have to marry the two factors to qualify it as a quality backlink. Ideally, the length of the content of the page should range from 700-1000 words and should be relevant and useful to the user.

Make sure to acquire links from a page that at least has more than 500 words, otherwise you may get in Google’s bad books for creating spam links.

What Does NOT Make a Quality Backlink

Domain Niche Relevancy

This backlink qualifying misconception is common among many misinformed SEO experts. It is a misconception that one could be forgiven of, after all, many SEO powerhouses have insisted on the power of domain niche relevancy to link building.

As an example, let’s look at Mashable, which has a domain authority of above 90. From entertainment, culture to science and tech, there are a good number of topics on Mashable, yet acquiring a link through Mashable will rocket your website on Google SERPs.

You might wonder how a website like that, which covers such a wide range of topics can pass on link equity. It is because domain relevancy never mattered! It is impossible to regard domain niche relevance as a ranking factor, there are a number of sites talking about uncountable topics and publishing such content. What is clear is that to Google, only page relevancy matters.

Site Design

When it comes to on-page SEO, site design can be a factor when it comes to ranking. But it is completely irrelevant to determining the quality of the link.

The aesthetics of any website are completely subjective and Google has no way of computing whether the design of a site is appealing to the users or not. This is why Google has never regarded site design as a metric for link quality. Design has never mattered for sites with great search authority.

Domain Authority

Pay attention: Domain Authority (DA) never was a metric to decide the quality of the link and it never will be.

DA never tells the full story and is not eligible as a metric for link quality. Yes, it shows the quality of the referring domain but has little to no impact on the quality of the link. You may witness a drop in your DA but the ranking may remain the same or even increase. This is because the relevancy of your acquired link has been on point. DA only shows the power of the domain.

When it comes to backlinking, you will need to find other metrics to identify links as quality and move away from DA.

What Google Wants Is the Most Important Factor

The purpose of creating a link is to drive more web traffic on keywords that hold significance for your business. It is about providing users with relevant information and the right navigation on the internet to provide them with what they have been looking for. That is what Google wants from you, to satisfy the user rather than to increase the power of your domain. Once you satisfy the user and deliver to them what they have been looking for, your business will gain the power you were looking for.

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